Your State’s Favorite Lord of the Rings Character

On December 19, it will have been 20 years since we were transported from Middle-Earth, watching Frodo Baggins make his debut on the big screen in The Fellowship of the Ring. This kicked off the first movie in The Lord of the Rings trilogy, which is now one of the highest-grossing movie franchises of all time—and we all know why. Combining J.R.R. Tolkien’s compelling fictional storyline with modern film and camera technology has left us with nothing short of a cinematic masterpiece.

In celebration of this anniversary, we took a look at data surrounding the beloved characters we’ve followed on-screen since 2001. Take a look at our map to see which Lord of the Rings character is your state’s favorite!

Map
Legend

Interesting Findings

  • Frodo and Gollum tied for the most popular character in the nation, each winning over 12 states
  • Utah and Alaska each had a four-way tie for their favorite character
    • Utah was torn between Sauron, Boromir, Sam, and Merry
    • Alaska couldn’t choose between Gandalf, Legolas, Arwen, and Saruman
  • Idaho, Missouri, and Vermont had ties for their favorite character

Film Facts

  • There were 19,000 costumes created for the movie.
  • Sean Astin put on a whopping 30 pounds for his role as Sam.
  • Orlando Bloom (Legolas) performed many of his own stunts. He broke a rib at one point during filming.
  • In the Mines of Moria where the adventurers encounter the tomb, Viggo Mortensen (Aragorn) is filmed from only one side due to an injury on the other side of his face. He had a minor surfing accident prior to filming the scene and the swelling on his face wasn’t able to be covered by makeup.
  • Overall, The Fellowship of the Ring was nominated for 152 awards and won 98 of them, including Oscars, Grammy Awards and Golden Globes.

Methodology

We looked at Google Trends search volume data for 15 Lord of the Rings characters to see which was most popular in each state from November 2020 to November 2021.

StateCharacter
AlabamaBilbo
AlaskaGandalf/Legolas/Arwen/Saruman
ArizonaBilbo
ArkansasBilbo
CaliforniaGollum
ColoradoFrodo
ConnecticutBoromir
DelawareLegolas
District of ColumbiaGaladriel
FloridaFrodo
GeorgiaGollum
HawaiiSamwise
IdahoAragorn/Frodo
IllinoisFrodo
IndianaFrodo
IowaSaruman
KansasSamwise
KentuckyGollum
LouisianaGollum
MaineSaruman
MarylandSauron
MassachusettsGollum
MichiganFrodo
MinnesotaFrodo
MississippiBilbo
MissouriFrodo/Bilbo
MontanaGimli
NebraskaGollum
NevadaBoromir
New HampshirePippin
New JerseyFrodo
New MexicoSaruman
New YorkGollum
North CarolinaGollum
North DakotaBilbo
OhioGollum
OklahomaBilbo
OregonGaladriel
PennsylvaniaBoromir
Rhode IslandFrodo
South CarolinaFrodo
South DakotaSauron
TennesseeBilbo
TexasGollum
UtahSauron/Boromir/Samwise/Merry
VermontGollum/Bilbo
VirginiaGaladriel
WashingtonFrodo
West VirginiaBilbo
WisconsinBoromir
WyomingGollum